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School District Slashes Water Consumption, Saves Money

Since last July, the district has saved over $75,000 by dropping water usage by 18.2 percent.

Patch photo archive
Patch photo archive
Information submitted by Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District—

As California faces the latest potential drought, Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District (LVJUSD) has already taken steps to do their part in meeting the voluntary water reduction asked for by the California Governor's office.

[Related article: Livermore Experiences Driest Year on Record]

During the first six months of the current school year which began July 1, 2013, LVJUSD has reduced water consumption by 18.2%, a savings of more than $75,000. The District overall goal is to achieve an annual reduction between 15%-20%. Water audits and rebates from Zone 7 Water Agency, the City of Livermore and California Water Service have provided insight and incentive in the water conservation progress. The audit findings and suggested ways to conserve have been shared throughout the District.

Through a combination of updated technology, adjustment of water schedules, updated nozzles, repairs, re-direction of appliances and review of past methods and procedures, the District has adopted a new view of water issues and conservation. In a number of cases, irrigation has been curtailed on unused sections of fields and landscape. The District Maintenance Department has worked to increase awareness about water use with staff and applied a number of these conservation practices throughout the District.
 
The Grounds Operation Department has been installing mulch at all school sites and the District Office for water conservation. Mulch can reduce watering needs by up to 30% by reducing moisture loss due to evaporation. The mulch itself is free; either from the chipping of our own tree trimmings or from cooperation
from local tree companies dropping off clean wood chips at our grounds facility. 

The LVJUSD still has work ahead of them which include: continued updating of irrigation technology to include wireless control stations that are continually updated with weather information that will adjust watering times and frequencies; replacing landscape with drought tolerant choices; locating and applying 
for grants and rebates to help subsidize technology upgrades; training maintenance staff in the best practices in irrigation and landscaping; and including a water conservation component during modernization of facilities.

Past drought coverage on Patch:

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